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Any former smokers - question!

Discussion in 'Running at WDW' started by DznyGrlSD, Sep 18, 2016.

  1. DznyGrlSD

    DznyGrlSD Well-Known Member

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    Good morning!

    Are there any former smokers here that are now RunDisney enthusiasts?

    I have a question for you. I quit smoking in 2012 and have been training for my 1st 5k which I did yesterday. I have had no issues running on the treadmill indoors at the gym with my breathing/lungs but after about 5 minutes of running outside yesterday my lungs were on fire and I couldn't catch my breath. I've been coughing off and on since yesterday and it feels like I just quit smoking again!

    Is it running/exercising outside vs inside that irritated my lungs? Does this eventually go away? Any suggestions? I'm assuming spend more time outdoors exercising/running is going to be the answer.

    thanks in advance :)
     
  2. Swissmiss

    Swissmiss Well-Known Member

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    Congrats on your 1st 5k! It could be that you started out too fast during the race, getting swept along with all the runners, and were running at a pace that you don't normally run on the treadmill. As I am only interested in participating/finishing races, and I don't care about my time, I tend to hold back and let everyone else take off first, which helps me keep to a pace I know I can sustain.
     
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  3. Mad Stitch

    Mad Stitch Premium Member

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    Congratulations on taking steps to a healthier lifestyle. I have never been a smoker so I can't speak to that, but treadmill running is different than outdoor running and requires an adjustment period. I live in the north and once we reach freezing temperatures I transition to the treadmill for winter. Come spring when I go back outdoors I'll struggle for the first few weeks. I call it "getting my outdoor legs back." Just stick with it and it will get easier.
     
  4. dreamfinder

    dreamfinder Well-Known Member

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    It could be something in the air where the race was held, or the differences in air quality/humidity from the gym to outdoors. I'm not sure how long it takes the lungs to repair themselves after quitting smoking (never been a smoker), but if they aren't at full strength you could easily be much more affected by inhaling something like exhaust from a passing truck and then running a 5k. By themselves, you might have no problems with either, but combining them may still be too much. I'd suggest just keep training, which should help to strengthen your lungs gradually, as well as trying to work some outdoor runs in occasionally. Not only is it good practice to do simulated runs in race conditions (IE training run at 5:30 for a 5:30 AM race) it's also good practice to do different things within your runs occasionally to help improve your overall form and strength. So tossing some pavement runs in, and even grass or trail if you primarily train on treadmill is good practice. Most people will work a slightly different set of muscles, so it's just good to do.
     
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  5. Office Angel

    Office Angel New Member

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    Hiya,

    Congrats on giving up !!!!

    First - It will get easier, I promise you.
    Second - Full disclosure - I am a true back of the pack girl - I am NOT fast (Baymax is my spirit animal :))

    I gave up smoking in 2013 (almost exactly 3 years ago) and in the last 2 years I have run 6 10k runs (including this years inaugural Darkside 10k) and numerous 5k runs. Prior to giving up I had taken part in a number of 5 & 10k runs and like you I do the majority of my training in the gym.

    I am afraid the one thing that has really helped me is doing a wee bit more training outside - it helps with your breathing, your speed and your endurance. Don't get me wrong though - I still prefer the treadmill, it does wonders from my confidence and has taken me from an overweight walker to someone who is training for her first half marathon (Im still overweight but I will get there) Oh and like Swissmiss says - try and pace yourself - I am there for me and no one else - as long as I finish I am more than happy, everyone is running their own race (remember the difficult bit is starting - if it was easy everyone would do it)

    Good Luck and I hope this helps

    OA:angelic:
     
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  6. Greenlawler

    Greenlawler Well-Known Member

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    Quit in 2000 a full 17 years ago.

    Never really experienced what you have. Of course by the time I got started running I had been quit for 7 years.

    Congrats on both lifestyle changes, I have no input other than...

    The other posters have been dead on, I think the quality of air, and or treadmill are bullseye responses.
    I do not want to miss a chance to encourage someone,
    or to brag about quitting myself ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
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  7. gljvd

    gljvd Active Member

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    I never smoked much although I do enjoy a few cigars a year. However I am a fat large man (300 @ 6'4 ) and I started couch to 5k indoors. The treadmill has bounce that outside doesn't. I could do a 5k on the treadmill in about 38 minutes with long jogs during that. Outside I'm at like 47 minutes and its a lot more fast walking with me out of breath and my legs hurting . So I don't think its just your smoking , I think some of it will be the difference
     
  8. dreamfinder

    dreamfinder Well-Known Member

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    Do you use an incline on the TM? Due to a few factors, one being the slight pull back the TM will give your feet you don't get while running outside (meaning less movement you do, so less effort, etc), you need to put it on a slight incline (1-3) to get a similar workout as if you ran outside.
     
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  9. gljvd

    gljvd Active Member

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    yea I do it at a 1. The problem with outside is that I don't know how to control my speed right so I start off quickly and run out of steam faster. The treadmill keeps me at a fixed speed.
     
  10. Greenlawler

    Greenlawler Well-Known Member

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    I have trained exclusively on treadmill for probably over half of my marathons.

    Obviously dreamfinder is right, and is probably the most hard core runner on here.

    But here are two "obvious" suggestions that might help.

    I think it is largely mental. I agree the TM "makes" you stay constant, but you can too. Listening to music with a steady beat helps me a great deal. I used to not listen to music at all while I ran, I listened to books, or podcasts or nothing. Incredibly and, obviously superficially, my times improved radically when I started listening to something with a rhythm that reminded me of the pace a ran on a treadmill. I do not listen to music all the time because frankly I think it's boring, so I save it for serious runs and races.

    Also...

    Do you use a running watch? Something that keeps your pace? I had never run with a watch until my 7th marathon I never felt like a "serious" runner because I was running for fun at Disney, so I did not "need" a watch. But my wife bought me one for Christmas one year. Actually seeing my pace helped immensely. Seeing that I should slow down early in a race, shaved 20 minutes off my previous marathon simply by adding a watch, and the second time I used a watch I shaved another 14 minutes off.
     
  11. gljvd

    gljvd Active Member

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    yea I have a microsoft band.

    I'm doing couch to 10 k for the wine and dine 5 and 10k . I figure I will have to walk a lot for the 10k but I should be able to jog the 5k strait through. I am starting couch to 10k again from the start doing 2 days a week outside and continue where I'm at 3 times a week inside. I figure the inside will bring up my stamina and the outside will help me learn to control my pace.

    I don't mind getting a low time on the 10k. I just want to do it. This time last year I was 350lbs. So I just want to add on the acomplishments to keep me moving the needle down.
     
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  12. dreamfinder

    dreamfinder Well-Known Member

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    The whole cadence/pacing thing will just improve with time. The more you run, the more your body/mind will be able to approx. what pace you are at. Especially if you do it on a TM or have a watch you can use to see your pace with.

    The most important thing is simply to keep at it. Your pace will get better with time (and usually without thinking about, just by adding distance) as will your overall health. Don't be too worried if you have an off day, or if you find TM to be easier/harder than road/trail/whatever. Every runner will find their own best path. The important thing is simply to get out there and keep running. Enjoy your run for what it brings to you, and the rest will naturally fall into line.
     
  13. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    Congrats on quitting! It took my mom nearly 20 years to finally stop. My dad quit cold turkey and made her life hell until she finally was able to quit. Used to smoke, but was a light smoker, maybe 5-6 cigarettes a week and only at work (loved what I did, the people I worked with were hell). Gave it up several years ago, never really understood why I started as I hated the taste and smell. Must have been one of those "I'm in college and wanna be cool" things, and I didn't smoke on a regular basis Didn't have any breathing issues, though, when I started running.

    Ditto what everyone else said.

    @dreamfinder is on target about pacing. I'm a very fast walker with long strides, so like you, I have a tendency to start at a faster pace than I should. As @Greenlawler suggested, get a running watch. One with GPS would be advisable so you don't have to carry your phone when you run. I wear a Fitbit Surge when I run outdoors because of the built in GPS, otherwise I wear the new Charge 2 for treadmill runs. A sports watch with heart rate monitoring is another important feature.

    If there's a local running club in your area, check to see if they have a beginners group. The club where I live just announced a program for beginning runners once a week to be held at the university's running track. Getting input from experienced runners is always welcome.

    Keep it up, it will get easier, and we look forward to hearing about your first 10k. And then your first half marathon.

     
  14. DznyGrlSD

    DznyGrlSD Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    Just checking in on this one - I did a 2nd 5k about a month after this one and I slowed down my pace and my lungs were fine. I did too much, too hard, too fast trying to keep up with everyone else. Thanks again everyone!
     
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  15. ntrider

    ntrider New Member

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    DznyGrlSD, I see this is an old post but thought I would still reply. maybe you will find the post and find it helpful. I am a former smoker. Smoked for about 10 years and now haven't for about 15. I experience the same symptoms that you described. I would run even when I was a smoker. when I would complete a half I would hack all day. if I ran fast or in cold I would hack and my chest would burn. once after a half I asked my friend if he ever hacks like this. He said no and that something isn't right. I then went into the Dr and they explained to me exercise induced asthma. now I am not a Dr so I have no idea what is going on with you. But in my case this was the diagnosis. skip ahead 15 years later. Still to this day, If I start too fast my chest will start to burn and I will start to hack. however, the key for me is to start slow and slowly increase my pace as I "warm up" and then I can go without symptoms. I need to start slow for at least 20 minutes and will continually get faster til about 45 minutes then I have no issues. my Dr did prescribe me an inhaler and that does help also. I will take the inhaler before I do any speed workouts, 5k races etc or any long event such as a half or full. typically if I am running for less than 2 hours and I am having an easy run I do not need it because I will start extremely slow. before a "5k race" I will also make sure I do at least a 20 minute warmup so I can start faster. again, I am not a Dr and I have no idea if this is what is going on with you but I just wanted to share my story and my results.
     
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